Brent Hill, left, Jan Hill and Bonnie Larrabee of the Buxton-Hollis Historical Society are preparing for the open house and unveiling of the new West Buxton exhibit April 27.

West Buxton exhibit to open

The Buxton-Hollis Historical Society will hold an open house and celebrate the opening of its West Buxton exhibit from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. April 27, at the museum, 100 Main St. (Route 4A).

The open house will feature refreshments and the Maine band BillyBilly. Besides the museum, two former West Buxton buildings, the Shadagee School and the Barnes Jewelry Store, which have been moved to 55 Fountain St. in Bar Mills and repurposed, will be open for tours.

The new West Buxton exhibit, “From Moderation Village to Downtown West Buxton, 1840s-1950s,” features photos and artifacts from the area once called Moderation and includes the Hollis side of the Saco River. Memorabilia from   river drives and lumbering, and postal items will be among pieces displayed.

Brent Hill, past president of the society, said West Buxton is a concept and doesn’t have a boundary. “Moderation Falls was in the river,” he said.

Jan Hill, historical society president, said many of those who operated West Buxton businesses were of Polish, Irish, English and Syrian heritages. “Moderation was a village of immigrants,” she said.

Historical businesses included saw, grist and woolen mills along with blacksmith shops, stores, a stove assembly factory and a hydroelectric dam. West Buxton even had a semi-pro baseball team, an airport on the Hollis side of the river and a post office. Hydroelectric generators remain active today.

The museum will open on Saturdays 9 a.m. to noon beginning in May through October. For more information, call 929-1684.